Melissa Wright of Rimbey passed away peacefully in the Rimbey Hospital and Care Centre on Friday November 13, 2009 at the age of 97 years. Born in the old farm home on February 12, 1912 at Donalda, Alberta to Ethel (Flack) and Colin McKay, Melissa was the eldest of four children. Melissa was followed by Marjorie Waterman) on June 27, 1913 and by Flack McKay and finally Helen (Holmquist). Melissa attended school in her early years at Science Mound rural school and then high school in Donalda. Following high school, Melissa attended the Camrose Normal school and then began teaching in 1952 at the old stone school in the Foreman district near Settler. Melissa taught for 9 years in the rural schools near the towns of Consort, Hardisty, Coronation and Stetttler. Later she moved to “graded schools” in Botha, Edmonton, Huxley, the County of Grande Prairie, Seba Beach, Edburg and Donalda. While still teaching Melissa continued her education and earned her Bachelor of Education with a major in Home Economics at the University of Alberta in 1958. Melissa was dedicated to her career and provided her support and leadership in the Home Economics Council and attended numerous functions throughout the years as an advocate for the organization. In1961 Melissa taught Home Economics at Kingman and later at Winfield and the Roman Catholic school in Camrose and then finally at Rimbey. Melissa and Stephen were married in 1972 and enjoyed many happy years together farming, traveling and enjoying the companionship of numerous friends and relatives. An accident in 1973 ended Melissa’s teaching career. Predeceased by her husband, Stephen who died in December 1995 and her sister, Helen in 2005, Melissa is survived by her sister, Marjorie of Red Deer and Nephews, Lisle Waterman (Debra Curry) and great nephews, Jon, David and Eric Waterman all of Red Deer and their mother, Roseanne Waterman of Red Deer. Niece, Thelma Madore (Robert Madore) of Carvell Alberta. Nephew, Kenneth Waterman (Teresa) of Grande Prairie. Melissa also leaves to mourn, one brother; Flack McKay of Edmonton (Kipness Veterans’ Centre) and Nephew, Bryan McKay (Debbie McKay) and great Nephew, Jesse McKay and great Niece, Rebecca (née McKay) also of Edmonton.
In her later years Melissa continued her community involvement with her numerous friends both within and outside of her church. Many people have benefited from her great generosity of dedicated service to others throughout the years. In recent years Melissa has remained in her home and has greatly appreciated the kindness and generosity of neighbours and friends like Sanni , Peter and her home care aide, Joy.
Melissa’s family would like to also express their great appreciation for the care that she received at the Rimbey General Hospital. Funeral services will be held from the Rimbey United Church on Friday, November 20, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. with Reverend Deborah Laing officiating. Interment of Melissa’s cremated remains will follow in the Gadsby Cemetery Gadsby, Alberta. If friends desire, memorial contributions may be made to the Rimbey United Church, P.O. Box 7, Rimbey, Alberta T0C 2J0 or to the charity of the donor’s choice. Expressions of sympathy may be forwarded to the family at: firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject heading (WRIGHT).